Game Warden

Your favourite safari destination

Which is your favourite safari destination?   121 members have voted

  1. 1. Please vote below

    • South Africa
      11
    • Kenya
      24
    • Tanzania
      19
    • Zambia
      16
    • Zimbabwe
      6
    • Botswana
      39
    • Namibia
      3
    • Mozambique
      0
    • Angola
      0
    • Rwanda
      0
    • Uganda
      2
    • Other
      4

Please sign in or register to vote in this poll.

107 posts in this topic

@@Tom Kellie

Off topic, but relating (in passing) to your post.

In September we were in Madrid for a few days, and were surprised to find a street called "Calle de Zorilla" - I think named after Spanish Poet - Jose Zorilla.

I don't know the connection with "your" Zorilla however.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@Tom Kellie

Off topic, but relating (in passing) to your post.

In September we were in Madrid for a few days, and were surprised to find a street called "Calle de Zorilla" - I think named after Spanish Poet - Jose Zorilla.

I don't know the connection with "your" Zorilla however.

 

~ @@TonyQ

 

A pilgrimage destination for yours truly!

If I ever return to Madrid it will be essential to find and pose for a photograph by the street sign.

That would very likely be the only zorilla I'd ever encounter in the field.

Many, many thanks for mentioning that!

Tom K.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Karieka National Game Reserve in South Africa is gonna be my pick.

I will never forget seeing elephants passing by our Jeep in the early morning fog.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I voted "other" for the Central African Republic --- it was such an adventure and I am not sure I'll ever have a trip that had the "feel" of that one for me. A total adventure.  The forest elephants in Dzanga Bai, the gorillas, plus the cultural aspect of the Ba'aka forest people, time spent with Andrea Turkalo on the viewing platform and visiting her in her encampment.  Meeting Louis Sarno (RIP) and seeing a rare pair of picathartes flying out of a jungle cave...it was magic to me!

 

That being said---it's an incredibly difficult question for Africa...

 

I just read your comments and I sure hope you feel welcome on here @Alexander33  I'm a reIative newcomer to ST as well only discovering the site a few years ago ----I put off going to South Africa for years in search of the "real Africa" that so many opine about...when I finally got around to it, I had an AMAZING safari in Sabi Sands with the best leopard viewing I've had anywhere in Africa(13 trips now)!  Plus The Big Five: as a rhino fan, I never get enough of these big tanks and there were plenty outside Kruger in these private reserves.. mating lions...an enormous male leopard (and then another!) on a giraffe kill---how'd they bring it down?? Hyenas were all over the carcass the next day with a roaring lion in the distance keeping them on edge...leopard cubs at play...all these years later I remember it well.  Plus you can always put in a few days in Cape Town (Great White Sharks!!) which is one of my favorite cities in the world!  

 

I've just concluded it's different strokes for different folks...some people are interested in "the more remote, the better" approach....but animals are sometimes shyer and more reclusive in these spots...then some folks are "give me the goods!" and for the sightings and animal volumes they sacrifice a bit with regard to exclusivity (you are just likely to have more company in the camps and perhaps at a sighting)...and when I say exclusivity, I don't take that as pretentiousness but just the desire to find wilderness that gives one the feeling of being out there away from it all and away from humans---my last trip to Kenya was like that...the scenery was just spectacular...there are more people sharing it with you for sure but where else would I have seen a Mara River crossing with thousands of wildebeests and the crocs picking them off?  I wouldn't trade that sight for anything...we also saw a couple (unsuccessful) lion hunts on that trip...where the game concentrations are, so go the predators and the ease of seeing them!  So there really is no right or wrong answers and I read ST to get ideas for future safaris :)

 

Some other favorites:

I loved South Luangwa for that Old Africa feel, the wide winding river with hundreds (thousands?) of hippos and big crocs---plus it's where I saw my one and only aardvark!  They popped the bubbly when we got back to camp over that one :D no leopards however for me wen its reputation is the best place for leopards in Africa...

 

Namibia for a different sort of safari---I marveled at the wildlife that could survive in such stark surroundings...desert adapted elephants and rhinos and giraffes...zebra and oryx and springbok...Serra Cafema was magic but so was Skeleton Coast and Sossusvlei...charged by rhinos in Damarland?  That's quite a rush!  We were so close to seeing desert lions in Hoarusib along the skeleton coast but even the desert has dense scrub and they are very skittish due to hunting :(

 

And how could I leave out Tanzania with the combination of Mahale Mountains and Katavi and Ruaha....I love the contrast and for sheer dramatic location it combines Edgar Rice Burroughs Tarzan's Africa with the traditional African veldt.

 

So there's really no "one and only" answer contemplating the subject.  Mountain gorillas?  Gosh, the possibilities are endless.  Still, I love to read other folks' thoughts and their safari favorites.  The diversity of Africa and the fact you can go again and again to the same place and have different unique experiences each time...it's the animal behavior that makes it such an interesting journey like no other...I'm rambling now...surprised no one said Chad with as much excitement as it's generated with Zakouma...

 

 

 

 

 

2 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, gatoratlarge said:

I voted "other" for the Central African Republic --- it was such an adventure and I am not sure I'll ever have a trip that had the "feel" of that one for me. A total adventure.  The forest elephants in Dzanga Bai, the gorillas, plus the cultural aspect of the Ba'aka forest people, time spent with Andrea Turkalo on the viewing platform and visiting her in her encampment.  Meeting Louis Sarno (RIP) and seeing a rare pair of picathartes flying out of a jungle cave...it was magic to me!

 

As an aside, you're the first person I know who knows Andrea!  I work with her cousin David and he's kept me up to date on her work for the last 8 years.  I am so envious that you got to spend time with her!  Sadly, she never got her feet under her after she had to leave C.A.R. when her camp was invaded by rebels a couple years ago.  She went back and tried to restore everything but instead just retired recently.  If anyone hasn't seen her piece on 60 Minutes (google her name and 60 Minutes) it is fabulous!

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, gatoratlarge said:

 

I just read your comments and I sure hope you feel welcome on here @Alexander33 

 

 

@gatoratlarge

 

Ah, yes, my little rant from 3 years ago – the words that keep on giving.  :)

 

At the time, we had just returned from our first safari to South Africa (Timbavati and Sabi Sands), with Cape Town tacked on at the end.  My head was still spinning from the thrill of that trip (and my pocketbook was still aching) when I came across some comments that seemed to disparage those locations.  I have to admit that the words stung, and I reacted, perhaps more defensively than I should have.  When you’ve just shelled out twice as much as you’ve ever spent on a vacation, and had the time of your life, the suggestion that your experience was “touristy” packs a punch.

 

Fast forward from then to now: I’ve taken 2 more safaris and have my fourth one coming up in January, not to mention 2 trips to Costa Rica and another to Brazil under my belt since then, all influenced (some entirely) from tips picked up right here on Safaritalk.  I’ve even got 2 current trip reports going on right now.  So, yes, I’d say that not only do I feel welcome here, but, if anything, maybe I’ve made myself a little too much at home!

 

I do maintain that it’s important for safari veterans to remember what it was like when they took their first safari and to choose their words carefully.  I’d hate to say anything, even inadvertently, that had the effect of diminishing someone else’s safari experience.    An offhand wisecrack about a “Big Five Safari” can pierce the heart of a first-timer.  A safari to a well-known and popular destination that you know will be safe, clean and likely to yield all the “usual suspects” is often a good choice for a newcomer, one that will set the stage for more challenging adventures down the road.

 

And Central African Republic certainly qualifies as that, @gatoratlarge!  One of my dreams is to see lowland gorillas, but I still haven’t got the gumption to go to CAR.    I’ve looked at the Discovery Camps at Odzala in Republic of Congo, but the travel agents I’ve talked to have expressed concern about the iffy air transfers right now and aren’t recommending it, so I’ll sit tight for now.  But, still, if someone had told me 3 years ago I’d even be entertaining the thought, I wouldn’t have believed them.  So, baby steps still generate forward motion, yes?

 

In any event, this gives me a good excuse to update my response:

 

My favorite safari destination?  The next one I’ve got booked, of course!

 

3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ha!  @Alexander33  it is an old thread but for some reason popped up on my unread list of posts---maybe someone recently replied and it reactivated it.  

 

I agree with you.  Very well stated regarding folks' varied safari experiences. They're all valid really.  Funny that's where I went in South Africa outside of Kruger: Timbavati and Sabi Sands Exeter River. :)

 

I would encourage you to contact Rod Cassidy at Sangha Lodge.  He helped with all of the logistics for me to get to CAR and I could not have figured it out without him.  The situation in CAR has improved dramatically since I was there and I think there are more options to get there now.  Things are really picking up. But what is hard to convey is that even when things were bad in CAR, they were alright in this remote region of the country.  During the conflict a few years ago the situation got bad briefly in Bayanga which is where Sangha Lodge is near.  The question was really how to get there safely which is what Rod helped me with...thankfully, things have returned to normal three.  The reason I'm saying that is that I think the experience in CAR is fantastic.  There's no better place to see and observe forest elephants I'm certain of this...and they have habituated groups of western lowland gorillas including Makumba's family group with twins born a year or so ago...I've not been to Odzala but I think the overall experience might be better...plus Rod and Tamar are always rehabbing pangolins or other interesting creatures from the forest...

 

@amybatt I count that as one of the great privileges I've had: being able to spend time with her at Dzanga Bai.  I wonder if anyone else is there studying forest elephants now that she has retired?  I can't help but think the fact that she was there living so close to the bai was a protective factor for the elephants...I did not know until spending time with her that she was married to Michael Faye of National Geographic/megatransect fame.  She has had a very colorful and wonderful life...Sadly, she was more pessimistic/realistic? about the prospects and future of forest elephants...corrupt governments, Chinese and foreign logging/timber interests, exploitation of natural resources...she saw it all...one of the more interesting people I've ever met.  I hope from retirement she can find ways to help the cause of conservation.  I'm sure she will...

 

The Bai is the main attraction I'd say of Sangha Dzanga...

2 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.


© 2006 - 2017 www.safaritalk.net - Talking Safaris and African Wildlife Conservation since 2006. Passionate about Africa.